Monday, January 9, 2012

Nostradamus (1994)

Synopsis: Tormented seer tells us civilization is basically going down the crapper after the 16th Century.

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “The Black Plague threatened man’s existence. The Inquisition of a tyrannical church terrorized the masses. But Nostradamus (Tcheky Karyo) stared through a window to the future. From his turbulent childhood forward, prophetic visions haunted him. A brilliant iconoclast at odds with scholars, priests, and rulers, he constantly struggled for credibility – and his life.”

What Did I Learn?: If anyone coughs, run for your lives, it’s the plague!!

Really?:  1) It’s kinda funny how Nostradamus’ visions of the atom bomb, Hitler and JFK all look like they were taken from black-and-white newsreel footage. 2) So wait, Nosty's sister-in-law wanted to jump his bones sooooo much that when he turned her down, she called in the Inquisition on him? Sorry, but I’m calling bullshit. 3) Nostradamus had never seen a swastika before his visions of WWII? Really?

Rating: Two things I don’t enjoy are dumbed-down history, and being patronized. The film presents Nostradamus as a medical genius who constantly ran afoul of the Inquisition; imagine my surprise when I found out that dude got along quite well with the Church, and that prophecy and astrology were actually outside the scope of the Inquisition. I have no idea about the historical accuracy of this film, but it was somewhat entertaining, albeit depressing. 6.5/10 stars.

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